by Tristan L'Hermite François (1601 - 1655)
Translation © by Stephen Shea

Je tremble en voyant ton visage
Language: French (Français) 
Available translation(s): ENG FIN
Je tremble en voyant ton visage
Flotter avecque mes désirs,
Tant j'ai de peur que mes soupirs
Ne lui fassent faire naufrage.

De crainte de cette aventure 
Ne commets pas si librement
À cet infidèle élément
Tous les trésors de la Nature.

Veux-tu, par un doux privilège,
Me mettre au-dessus des humains?
Fais-moi boire au creux de tes mains,
Si l'eau n'en dissout point la neige.


Musical settings (art songs, Lieder, mélodies, (etc.), choral pieces, and other vocal works set to this text), listed by composer (not necessarily exhaustive)

Available translations, adaptations or excerpts, and transliterations (if applicable):

  • ENG English (Stephen Shea) , "I tremble when I see your face", copyright © 2018, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • FIN Finnish (Suomi) (Erkki Pullinen) , "Vapisen nähdessäni kasvojesi", copyright © 2016, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

This text was added to the website between May 1995 and September 2003.
Line count: 12
Word count: 66

I tremble when I see your face
Language: English  after the French (Français) 
I tremble when I see your face
Floating with my desires,
So much do I fear that my sighs
Might cause it to be shipwrecked.

For fear of that happening
Don’t entrust so freely
To that unstable element
All the treasures of Nature.

Do you wish, by a sweet privilege,
To place me above all human beings?
Make me drink from the hollow of your hands
So long as the water does not dissolve the snow they are made of.


  • Translation from French (Français) to English copyright © 2018 by Stephen Shea, (re)printed on this website with kind permission. To reprint and distribute this author's work for concert programs, CD booklets, etc., you may ask the copyright-holder(s) directly or ask us; we are authorized to grant permission on their behalf. Please provide the translator's name when contacting us.

Based on


This text was added to the website: 2018-11-19
Line count: 12
Word count: 80